Coming up with a GMAT study plan can almost be as hard as studying for the GMAT itself. The amount of planning that goes into it differs for everyone. But for someone diving into the world of GMAT for the first time, it is confusing to come up with a study plan on their own.
That being said, a GMAT study plan is a must for someone who wishes to score well on the test. It will keep you focused and will help you know exactly what your next move should be.
The first step to a good study plan is to know, roughly, how much time you should spend studying.
We don’t want to start studying for the GMAT in 2019 and then finish up in 2023. The hours you need to study, combined with a GMAT study plan, will help make sure that your study time is quality rather than quantity.
You can find out the number of hours you need to put in on your GMAT prep here.
First things first, you must gather all your GMAT prep material before starting with your GMAT prep.
Once you have done all of this, you are ready to start studying.
Here I am providing a sample GMAT study plan to help you understand how to go about your prep. Below we have a 100-hour study plan with an extra 15 hours for practice tests.
Why are practice tests 5 hours while the GMAT is only 3 hours?
Progress on the GMAT is measured quite differently. You might breakthrough to a 100-point improvement in 1 month and take the other 1.5 months to improve the next 30+ points.
Also, as you keep going higher on the score range, improvement will get harder, but with the right diagnostics of error, you will be able to make it. This is why practice tests are so important. Taking practice tests can help you map some of your progress and also help you see more issues that you could face with the test on test-day as time goes by.
But taking practice tests alone is not going to help you. You will also require to analyze these practice tests to understand the pattern of your weakness so that improvements can be made. This is what the additional 1-2 hours on the practice test are for.
If you require to tweak the number of hours, simply divide the number of hours you need to study for the GMAT in the ratios of the hours as presented below.
This is your time of research. You will need a good amount of time to get familiar with the test before you start hacking at it. It might seem like a small task and too much time, but this isn’t the time when you only look at the test format and the various sections. This is the time you will use to note down the different concepts that are tested on the GMAT.
You should also use this time to go through various GMAT blogs to understand the test on a deeper level. Read through the tips and trick that are provided for the test in general and not a section particularly.
You will require to use these tips to while attempting practice questions to create a habit of using them.
This time is all about GMAT Quant.
These twenty hours will be spent brushing up on every Math concept that the GMAT tests you on. Be it Algebra, Geometry, or any other concept, you need to strengthen your fundamental knowledge of it.
This is also time to practice using GMAT Quant Tips and Strategies that you had found in the previous segment.
Now you can safely move on to the Verbal section.
From Reading Comprehension to Sentence Correction, the GMAT Verbal section has different questions that need to be attempted in completely different ways.
Also, GMAT Quant might be a harder section, the GMAT Verbal surely will take the cake for being the most taxing. It has some of the most confusing questions and the lengthy Reading Comprehensions are a whole other story.
This is why we are giving this section complete 20 hours to be taken care of.
Read some Tips and Strategies to deal with the different types of GMAT Verbal questions.
Practice test (5-6 hours)
Hours 41- 80
We go back to Quant and Verbal now.
Since you have taken a practice test and measured your progress, the way ahead is to focus on the concepts that let you down during this practice test.
After analysis, which were the questions you kept getting wrong? Were you just not able to manage time?
Time Management is a real problem for students when it comes to the GMAT. Since we have strengthened our fundamentals, this segment of Verbal and Quant practice will also include following GMAT time Management tips.
Based on the inferences you made from your previous practice test, this time must be used focusing only on problem areas rather than the sections as a whole.
Practice test (5-6 hours)
Since we spent 4/5ths of our time focusing on the GMAT Quant, and GMAT Verbal sections, these last 20 hours will be the time that we need to focus purely on the Integrated Reasoning and the Analytical Writing Assessment sections.
The two sections hold much less weightage on the overall official GMAT score report however, they do hold some weightage. Thus, neglecting them completely would be a foolish thing to do.
With Integrated Reasoning questions, practice as many as you can lay your hand on.
The scoring of the AWA section on the GMAT is done very differently and so is the prep. Here you can find some tips to ace the GMAT Essay.
Practice test (5-6 hours)
We advise against going over the GMAT prep material obsessively once the GMAT Study Plan is over. This time should be used to relax and to avoid any possible GMAT Burnout.
If you study 2 hours per day on an average, your GMAT prep should be over in under three-months, following this GMAT Study Plan. However, if it is not, you shouldn’t worry, as everyone preps for the GMAT at their own pace. The end goal is to perform your personal best on the exam, even if it takes you over three months to reach that goal.